Don’t be fooled! Discover 5 Online Privacy Myths

Most people don’t take their exposure to the Internet seriously enough. Online privacy refers to the protection of data shared via the WWW (World Wide Web). Everyone knows that tech companies collect this data, but there are still misconceptions that need to be uncovered and understood.

We therefore offer you 5 today so as not to be fooled.

1. Nobody cares what you do online

To think that no one cares what we do online is completely wrong. Everything you do on the internet matters. The search terms you use, the web pages you visit, and the choices you make all play a role in what you are exposed to.

It's probably happened to you a few times: you mention a product or an event close to a friend, then you see an ad related to it later in the day.

This doesn't necessarily mean that social media like Facebook listens to your conversations and serves ads based on what you say - they collect so much data about you that they don't need it.even if they could.

Facebook

Based on what they know about you, the tech giants' algorithms cannot predict your next steps, but influence and manipulate your behavior. In fact, your data is so valuable to them that it's at the heart of their business strategies. So yes, everyone cares about what they do online.

2. Security and privacy are the same thing

When someone describes a product or service as secure and encrypted, most people assume that this also implies that the same product or service is private. But in reality, this is not the case. Security is not at all the same thing as privacy.

For example, Google's Gmail is perfectly secure. It has never suffered a serious breach and protects users with a strong and secure encryption protocol called Transport Layer Security (TLS). But it's far from private. Google collects all kinds of data about you and automatically personalizes ads based on what it knows. Basically, there are alternatives to gmail Privacy-focused for a reason.

In short, there are many safe but far from private online services. And while it's true that security and privacy go hand in hand, they're certainly not the same thing.

3. Companies must respect my privacy if I say so

We respect your privacy and are committed to protecting your data.

You see slogans like this all the time, don't you? Most of the time, these statements mean whatever the wish of the legal team that issued them.

If you really want to know how a company handles your personal data, you should read their terms of service and privacy policy carefully. And even that sometimes isn't enough, because most of these documents are hard to read, they're large, and they're full of carefully crafted disclaimers meant to protect a company from lawsuits.

Needless to say, few people take the time to review a 10-page privacy policy before downloading an app, but it's always a good idea to do a little research on a product or service before using it. Of course, it is also essential to understand how data privacy works and to be proactive in protecting it.

4. I cannot be identified if I do not share personal information

Even those who are not very careful about their online privacy would like not to share personal information such as their address, name, phone number or bank details with strangers. But can you be identified if you don't share information about yourself on the Internet? Yes you can.

Virtually anyone who uses the Internet can be identified by matching anonymized data with publicly available information. In practice, you already have what's called a fingerprint, or unique information about your device, system, and browser that sets you apart from others.

Avoiding intrusive apps, using a private browser, and hiding your real IP address with a VPN can certainly help protect you from fingerprinting, but it's important to keep in mind. who can be identified, no matter how carefully.

5. If you've done nothing wrong, you have nothing to hide.

What's wrong with willingly giving up some privacy to use a digital product for free? It's a perfectly legitimate question that embodies a sentiment shared by many: if you've done nothing wrong, you have nothing to hide.

Regardless of your philosophical stance, there are huge cybersecurity risks associated with privacy breaches, starting with identity theft and fraud. The idea that it's okay to put your data in the hands of an irresponsible corporation or an authoritarian government is just plain wrong no matter how you look at it.

Online Privacy: Take Steps to Protect It

Data is collected from you for a reason: it is extremely valuable. You can waive this data (and your privacy with it) or take steps to protect it. But even in this age of ubiquitous surveillance and global interconnection, there are things you can do to protect yourself and your personal information - it's about cultivating safe habits, because online privacy is also knowing what not to do.

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